Postdoc Cyclic Load Behaviour of Complex Bonded Steel-Composite Joints

Test and make model to predict the cyclic load behaviour of complex steel-composite bonded joints under multi-axial loading and make breakthrough in optimised designs in offshore structures.
  • WO
  • Tijdelijk
Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)


Reaching energy transition goals of 2030 and 2050 require multiple increases in production capacity and cost reduction of support structures for wind turbines offshore. With the increasing size of turbines and the deeper location of wind farms, the monopile foundations of offshore wind turbines increase in size, weight, and cost. Jackets can be attractive alternative because multi-membered circular hollow section (CHS) support structures are lighter than monopiles. However, the complex welds result in reduced fatigue resistance of structural joints of steel circular hollow sections thus higher costs and longer production route for jackets than for monopiles.

In the project WrapNode-II, TU Delft leads research with industrial partners following up the results in WrapNode-I, enabling implementation of the innovative, bonded, wrapped composite joint in jackets for offshore wind turbines. We aim to characterise and further understand full-scale and multi-axial behaviour and influence of offshore environment on durability of the joints.

Your role in the project/team will be to investigate the behaviour of wrapped composite joints with simple and complex geometry under cyclic loading.

You will focus on:

  • Fatigue testing of steel-composite bonded joints under uni-axial and multi-axial loads
  • Development of finite element models to validate fatigue tests in lab and make predictions for fatigue performance of joints at full-scale in structures.

The research focus of the department Engineering Structures is placed on the investigation and development of resilient, smart and sustainable structures and infrastructures as well as on the structures for energy transition. Within these main themes research is carried out into the dynamics of structures, mechanics of materials related to e.g. climate change, modelling and design of railway systems, multi-scale modelling of pavement materials and structures, reuse of materials, structures and parts of structures, assessment methods for structures, smart monitoring techniques, design methods, replacement and renovation of civil infrastructure and development of new materials and maintenance techniques. The groups are using the unique Macro Mechanics Laboratory for full scale testing, monitoring and modelling of structures to facilitate implementation of innovations. The department delivers a large number of courses both at the BSc and MSc level.


Background in terms of MSc and PhD in field of (combinations possible):

  • Civil/Structural Engineering (e.g. fatigue resistance of steel structures, connections, composites/FRP structures, tubular CHS or RHS joints);
  • Mechanical engineering (e.g ship building, wind turbine blades, offshore structures, fibreglass pipelines);
  • Aerospace Engineering (e.g. composites, fatigue and structural integrity).

Required skills/a candidate should have the following experience:

  • Designing of test set-ups for complex component experiments;
  • Conducting and control of component cyclic and/or monotonic load experiments;
  • Post-processing and analysis of monotonic and/or cyclic load experiments;
  • Non-linear FEA for failure mode and ultimate resistance analysis of structural joints and/or components;
  • Writing and publishing scientific papers in top journals.

Desired skills/ a good candidate would have the following experience:

  • Fatigue characterisation of composite (FRP) and/or steel structural components/joints;
  • Fracture analysis of bonded connections/joints;
  • Failure and fatigue of Circular Hollow Section joints;
  • Measurement techniques using DIC, LVDTs and optical fibres;
  • Design and implementation of mechanical fixtures for load application and BC control in joint level experiments;
  • Supervising theses of MSc students.


Delft University of Technology is built on strong foundations. As creators of the world-famous Dutch waterworks and pioneers in biotech, TU Delft is a top international university combining science, engineering and design. It delivers world class results in education, research and innovation to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate, mobility, health and digital society. For generations, our engineers have proven to be entrepreneurial problem-solvers, both in business and in a social context.

At TU Delft we embrace diversity as one of our core values and we actively engage to be a university where you feel at home and can flourish. We value different perspectives and qualities. We believe this makes our work more innovative, the TU Delft community more vibrant and the world more just. Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale. That is why we invite you to apply. Your application will receive fair consideration.

Challenge. Change. Impact!


Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities. The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, discounts on health insurance, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged.

For international applicants, TU Delft has the Coming to Delft Service. This service provides information for new international employees to help you prepare the relocation and to settle in the Netherlands. The Coming to Delft Service offers a Dual Career Programme for partners and they organise events to expand your (social) network.

Meer informatie

For more information about this vacancy, please contact our project manager: Tjeu Peeters, e-mail: or project leader dr. Marko Pavlovic, e-mail: More information about the project can be found on the following site.

For information about the application procedure, please contact our secretariat, e-mail: or project manager Tjeu Peeters, e-mail: